The Fall Guy and Unfrosted by Mike Peros

This month’s Mike Peros movie and TV reviews are on The Fall Guy and Unfrosted.
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[NoHo Arts District, CA] – This month’s Mike Peros movie and TV reviews are on The Fall Guy and Unfrosted

There is a time and a place for movies that offer plenty of food for thought (this probably fits in better with the next movie…)—and there are also those times when you just want to sit back with a medium bag of popcorn (and some Junior Mints) and have some fun. I was pretty sure that The Fall Guy would provide that opportunity, and I wasn’t disappointed (for the most part). Written by Drew Pearce and directed by Brian Leitch partly as a tribute to stunt performers, and inspired by the 1980s Lee Majors series, this Fall Guy stars the red-hot (from his time on Barbie) Ryan Gosling as Colt, experienced stuntman for an arrogant star (Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s Tom Ryder) and Emily Blunt (from Oppenheimer) as Jody, a camerawoman who also happens to be Colt’s girlfriend. An early near-fatal mishap sets the scene for a withdrawn, recuperating Colt to be led back into service by producer Gail Meyer (scene-stealing Guyman Casady), supposedly at the behest of a not-too-bitter Jody. However, Colt’s arrival on a Sydney film shoot (with Jody as director) proves to be more complicated, and dangerous, than first anticipated—especially when Ryder, the film’s star, mysteriously disappears.

Needless to say, The Fall Guy has plenty of plot complications (murder, betrayal, unrequited love, missed connections) but what kept me in my seat (besides the need to finish my popcorn) was primarily the chemistry between Gosling and Blunt. The two are pitch-perfect, both separately and together (though one wishes there were more of Blunt—she’s radiant and delivers a nicely judged performance). Some of their scenes work beautifully despite their not being in the same literal space (with a knowing nod to other movies that utilize the split-screen). Gosling brings Cole to life with a blend of energy, comic-timing, and introspection—not to mention intensity in the well-staged action sequences. These sequences strive to be both exciting and plausible—and most work on that level, though the film has one breakneck sequence too many (if you see it, you’ll know what I mean). In spite of this small caveat (and this last sequence does give Blunt the opportunity to join in the action), I would recommend seeing Fall Guy on a big screen. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Comedy can be awfully subjective, in terms of one’s reaction. (Perhaps you’ve been that one person who didn’t laugh when an entire theater is convulsed—or vice-versa, and the stony-faced patrons around you wish you would stop laughing—at a comedy, no less.) I’ve seen some sharply divided reaction to Jerry Seinfeld’s Unfrosted, or the “true story” of the birth of Pop-Tarts. Seinfeld directed (and co-wrote) this fanciful depiction (with a few grains of truth) about how a new breakfast treat was created despite opposition from various cereal companies, internal friction—and an unnecessary death. And I’ll tell you, some of it meanders, some of it doesn’t work, but more often than not, I was watching (it’s on Netflix) with a smile on my face. Seinfeld…well, is Seinfeld, but it’s interesting to see him play someone who cares (a little) about something, Hugh Grant makes a welcome appearance as the voice of Tony the Tiger, who simmers after he learns he has been lied to by management, Amy Schumer and Jim Gaffigan have fun as rival cereal executives, as does Melissa McCarthy as an enterprising food scientist. There are moments that made me laugh out loud, and I suspect you will too. Give it a try. It doesn’t cost anything—provided you’re a Netflix subscriber.